Opera singer performs during his own brain surgery

Ambroz Bajec-LapajneCourtesy of the Artist

August 12, 2015

Ambroz Bajec-Lapajne — a Slovenian opera singer — recently shared a video in which he performs two couplets from Franz Schubert's Gute Nacht, while undergoing surgery to remove a brain tumor.

The neuro-surgery team at University Medical Center Utrecht asked Ambroz to sing at different points throughout the surgery to ensure his cognitive functions were working properly. They also asked him to try singing the work in two different keys to see if he could notice the difference.

At one point (around the 2:40 mark), Bajec-Lapajne begins to trail off and lose the song for a bit. "As far as I understand," the singer notes in the YouTube comments, "there are no nerves in the brain. I believe he rewired my brain for a while and that was the result. I could not control my tongue anymore... it was a very weird feeling." Soon after, however, he is able to start again from the beginning.

The singer notes that the surgery was performed over a year ago, and he is "doing fine, continuing my professional singing career."